Looking for a showstopper of a fall dessert? Look no further than this delicious pumpkin chocolate babka recipe. Easy to make, filled with sweet chocolate ribbons through soft pumpkin bread. You’ll love this pretty dessert!
Are you still looking for the perfect fall dessert?
How about something that is not just pumpkin but rich chocolate too?
Well, look no further than this total showstopper of a dessert – my perfectly sweet pumpkin chocolate babka.
If you’re not familiar with babka that’s totally ok! I’m here to introduce you to this beautiful fall version.
Trust me, if you like yeast bread combined with pumpkin and chocolate you’ll LOVE this bread.
I like to eat a slice for breakfast, dessert, and any meal in between!
What’s a babka?
Traditional babka is sort of a cross between bread and cake. In simple terms, it’s a sweet braided bread.
You may have typically found it filled with chocolate, cinnamon, or jam.
For this version, I made the bread portion with the addition of pumpkin and kept the filling a more traditional fudgy chocolate.
If you’re Jewish or European you’re very likely familiar with babka. It’s a VERY POPULAR dessert that can be found at most bakeries or made in-home for special occasions.
Ingredients to make this babka:
- Whole milk – I used whole milk but non-dairy milks should work as well. Just make sure it’s warmed like in the directions.
- Yeast – The yeast helps the dough rise.
- Eggs – This help enrich the dough and bind it together.
- Pumpkin puree – This not only adds classic pumpkin flavor but alos helps add moisture to the dough.
- Vanilla extract – Just a touch of vanilla flavor but you could also use vanilla bean paste.
- All-purpose flour – This is the base of the dough.
- Granulated sugar – Sweetner to help give the dough a bit of a sweet bite.
- Unsalted butter – This helps enrich the dough.
Ingredients for the filling:
- Heavy cream – This helps dissolve the chocolate. It’s important to use the heavy cream here and not to subtitute with milk. You need the fat.
- Semi-sweet chocolate – If you’re out of semi-sweet chocolate you could also use bittersweeet.
- Unsalted butter – This helps hold the filling together and makes it spreadable.
- Powdered sugar – Helps bring sweetness to the chocolate filling and will dissolve smoothly.
- Unsweetened cocoa powder – This helps add a punch of extra chocolate flavor.
- Cinnamon – A simple addition that compliments the chocolate and pumpkin flavors.
Ingredients for the glaze:
While this babka is plenty sweet without the glaze I still recommend the addition because it makes the top of the bread shiny and helps keep it moist.
- Water – This helps dissolve the sugar to create a syrup.
- Granulated sugar – The sweetener for the syrup!
Tips for making babka:
- Take your time!
- Don’t rush the process of making this bread! It’s filled with a lot of eggs, butter, and pumpkin so the rise may take some time to come up. That is why I recommend letting it slowly rise in the fridge for 12 hours. Plus, a longer rise usually means you’ll be rewared with a bread that has even more flavor.
- Make sure to bake your bread fully!
- I know checking to see if bread is done can be hard and it’s even harder when you have all those layers. However, if you really want to be sure test the middle of the bread with an instant read thermometer. The bread is fully baked when the middle reads 185 degrees F.
- Try not to stress!
- Making babka looks stressful but I swear it’s easy! It’s more about taking your time and reading each step before moving along. This does take time but I swear it’s worth it!
Can I reheat babka?
Yes! While I don’t mind eating babka at room temperature some like it to be slightly warmed.
The best way to do this is to warm your slices gently in the oven for a few minutes at 250 degrees F or by popping it into the microwave for 15 seconds.
Can I freeze pumpkin chocolate babka?
Yes! In fact, it freezes very well!
To freeze you’ll want to wrap the loaf in plastic wrap and then place it in a freezer-safe zip-top baggie.
Place in the freezer for up to 3 months.
When you’re ready to eat it just take it out of the freezer and let it come back to room temperature on the countertop.
How long does babka last?
I try to eat my babka within 3 to 4 days.
It’s a very rich and moist bread so I like to gobble it up quickly to stop from either drying out or molding. You typically only have to worry about mold if it’s extremely hot and humid in your home.
Love this pumpkin chocolate babka?
Why not try a few of my other delicious pumpkin recipes?
- Looking for the perfect muffin recipe? Try my Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins.
- Need a delicious savory yeast bread recipe? Try my Pumpkin Yeast Bread.
- How about a fun fall cake? Try my Butterscotch Pumpkin Bundt Cake.
- Want to take it back to March 2020? Try my Pumpkin Spice Whipped Coffee.
- 1/3 cup whole milk, warmed to 100-110F
- 1 packet (2 ¼ teaspoons) active dry yeast
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3-1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, softened
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, softened
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
- A pinch of cinnamon (about 1/16th teaspoon)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
For the Dough
- Add the milk and yeast to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes, or until it is foamy on top.
- Next, add the eggs, pumpkin puree, and vanilla extract. Whisk to combine.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and granulated sugar.
- With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients.
- Once all of the flour has been incorporated, continue mixing for 1-2 minutes, or until the dough starts to form into a ball.
- With the mixer on low, add the butter 1 tablespoon at a time, allowing each piece to incorporate fully before adding the next one.
- Once all of the butter has been added, knead the dough for 1-2 minutes or until a smooth ball forms.
- Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and place it in the fridge overnight (at least 12 hours).
- Once the dough has rested, remove it from the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature-- about 1 hour. Then, continue with the filling below.
For the Filling
- Heat the cream in a small saucepan until it starts to steam. Remove from the heat and add the chopped chocolate and stir until the chocolate is fully melted. Set aside to cool for 5 minutes.
- In a small bowl, stir together the chocolate mixture and softened butter.
- Add the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and cinnamon. Mix to combine.
Assemble & Bake
- Grease a 9x5” loaf pan with butter or nonstick baking spray and set it aside until ready to use.
- Roll the dough out onto a lightly floured surface until it is ¼” thick. It should be about 15x12”.
- Spread the filling over the dough, making sure to go all the way to the sides.
- Roll the babka tightly into a log. Cut the log in half lengthwise and place it cut side up on the board.
- Twist strips together and smush the dough into your loaf pan.
- Set the dough in a warm place to rise for 1 hour.
- While the dough rises, preheat your oven to 375F.
- Bake the babka for 40-45 minutes, or until it is golden brown on top and set on the center.
Make the Glaze (optional)
- Before the babka comes out of the oven, make the syrup by combining the sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the sugar is dissolved.
- When the babka finishes baking, remove it from the oven and brush the top with the glaze.
- Allow the babka to cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove it to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Slice and enjoy. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two days.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 349Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 28mgCarbohydrates: 62gFiber: 3gSugar: 35gProtein: 7g
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.